Udayananu Tharam is the story of Udayabhanu (Mohanlal), a worshipper of films and an immensely talented assistant film director, who yearns to write and direct his own movie - at a time when the industry is filled with dubious filmmakers. Rajappan Thengummoodu (Sreenivasan) is a rather crooked friend of Udayabhanu and an aspiring and failed actor. As Udayabhanu finally prepares to shoot his first movie based on his own script, he discovers to his horror that Rajappan has stolen his manuscript, and shooting is underway with Rajappan playing the lead, which eventually propels him to stardom. Udhayabhanu soon finds himself faced with a career and personal crisis, with his faltering relations with his superstar wife Madhumati (Meena) contributing to the latter. Scripted by Sreenivasan in his usual self deprecating manner, the dialogues makes snide remarks at various contemporary film cultures such as business ventures of film stars (perhaps a stab at Mohanlal himself), the inflow of third-rate film directors into Malayalam cinema and their tendency to depend solely on Super Stars to produce hits, the prevalence of "mimicry films", the gaudy "cooling glass" dress sense of actors, the infamous Meera Jasmine struggle with her parents, and even about "rascals stealing promising actresses from the film industry" - taking a rather uncomfortable shot at several prominent Malayalam film star marriages.